CAIRO: The Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) issued a statement Sunday announcing that Egypt’s population will reach 87 million by Tuesday at 6:46 p.m.
The statement reported that this number will cause new effects on the social and economical fields in Egypt and a press conference is scheduled later to explain more details about the consequences.
CAPMAS’s last issue in July, in occasion of World Population Day, said that Egyptians abroad are an estimated 8 million, which means that the total number of the Egyptian population worldwide will reach 95 million. The increase in the number of males represented 51.1 percent of the population during the past eight years.
“Cairo registered as the governorate with the largest population with 9.1 million and South Sinai as the least populated with only 165,000 people,” according to the report. The population increase is due to the high birthrate, which rose to 31 live births per 1,000 Egyptians in 2013, compared to 25.7 live births per 1,000 Egyptians in 2006.
Former Director of the National Planning Institute Mahmoud Abdel Hay told The Cairo Post that Egypt’s main problem is not the population, as officials might expect from the news of the increase. The growth rate is natural if the state has a proper development plan for increasing employment opportunities and reducing poverty.
Abdel Hay said there are obvious reasons the state feels the pressure of the increasing population, such as the lack of job opportunities and lacking production rates. “If I have two working children and they have their own two children, we would not feel that over-population is a problem,” he said.
“We live on 6 or 7 percent of Egypt’s area of land and even after applying the government’s new Suez Canal expansion project, it might reach 10 percent, but that still leaves 90 percent of the land unused,” Abdel Hay said.
The government should start applying all experts’ research to achieve development instead of blaming the public for the increasing rate, which he added is not above average: “Development would lead to a stable population rate, not an increase.”
Abdel Hay criticized the government’s current solutions, especially with the energy crises, describing them as “stressful solutions.” He questioned how the government will support the new development projects, which will require on energy power, while there is an internal crisis concerning it.
“The real solutions should be represented in open policies, informed decisions, and getting rid of old policies that lead to crises. We must raise the economic standards, exploit manpower in new projects, and have officials talk responsibility doing their work instead of just blaming the people,” Abdel Hay said.